Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Coping...maybe not

It seem that my best therapeutic seems to be this blog.   It really is helping me to get the feelings out while I deal with this crap in my life right now. 

Sunday I was faced with a big decision.  I needed to decide if I was going to stay home and mope around or travel down the state for some business meetings that I have had scheduled for several months.  While being alone in the car for several hours didn’t sound like the best idea, I decided it would be better for me to get on with my life.  Either way, whether I am at home or at work, I am going to be sad, I might as well get my job done while I am at it. 

As expected the trip was not exactly the best idea.  I’m sure it is my mind playing tricks on me, but yesterday was cruel.  I mean the constant reminders of my lack of pregnancy would not let up.  I was just trying to enjoy listening to some music on Pandora when every single fucking commercial that came on during the breaks was “We’d like to take a moment to share real pregnancy stories….”  Seriously.  The worst thing about these “commercials” were that they were for the company that I work for!!!  I seriously need to talk to someone in marketing.  I mean have they ever even thought about how these commercials can come across to people that are childless, or going through every fertility problem known to man?  I seriously wanted to go and slam my car into one of their buildings.  I had to mute my volume in my car FIVE times to avoid the same horrible commercial over and over again.  If it wasn’t the overly cheerful pregnant mother on my radio it was the sheep in the fields.

 I spent the majority of my day driving through farmlands and canyons, which should be relaxing, but instead I have to see every earthly creature with their adorable brand new babies.  I had to laugh because I was so ridiculously pissed off at the sheep.  Who gets mad at sheep?  All I could think was, I bet the sheep never deal with infertility!  How would it be?  Their whole purpose in this life is to eat, get knocked up, get shaved or eaten and die.  No infertility problems for them.  Is my life really that sad right now that I am jealous of the sheep?

Let's highlight the other reminders of my trip that made me want to punch something:

  • When I finally get to the clinic that I am going to check in on a car pulls into the stall next to mine.  Out walks a woman and goes to the back door to get out her infant carrier carseat.
  • When talking to one of the employees that I was meeting with, she mentioned that the other tech was pregnant and needed to order a dosimetery badge for the pregnancy (I work in Radiology).
  • When I get to another one of my clinics the manager that I haven't seen in about a year waddles over to me.  She is extremely pregnant and just can "barely go on" any longer.  The poor thing.
  • One of the clinic managers that I talked to went on an on that it is a good thing that they "waited" before they got married because they wouldn't be able to hide it because she is so fertile.  Seriously what is wrong with people?
There honestly were too many other things to even mention that set me off, but this gives you an idea of what my life is like every day.  Every day is hell.  There are moments that are not though.  I was able to meet with one of the managers today and she and I are really close.  I don't know what it is about her, but I feel like I can tell her anything and she just has a way of making me feel better.  She reminds me a lot of my mom.  She did make me feel better today.  We talked through things and I was feeling better for the moment.  I felt better and then I was alone again and I cried.  And I was angry again.  I did something I regret now, but I can't change my actions.  Why am I not strong enough to get through this?  Why can't I be one of those people that seem to make the best of a horrible situation?  I just feel so weak.  I feel like I would be better off to stay away from my house and be away from my family.  I am supposed to go home tomorrow.  How am I supposed to do that when I am not ready to go home?  How do I go back to normal life?  I don't feel like I will ever be normal again.  Gees when will this pity party end?!?!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

New Beginning

So much of this blog has been anonymous and private.  I think it is time to open up a little about my life, outside the infertility.  Of course, my journey will be the focus here, but I just think it might be nice to have other things to talk about.  For example, you may not know this but this week, amongst its tragedy, was my 7th wedding anniversary.  I can't believe how incredibly luck I am to have the husband that I do.  He and I have been through countless struggles and he is still there for me and still loves me.  I have an incredible amount of guilt hanging over my head right now.  I didn't do a single thing for him for our anniversary.  Not a single thing.  I am a horrible person.  I had so much on my mind with the pregnancy that I just put aside the fact that  I have been married to a wonderful man for seven years!  Who does that?  Who ignores such a tremendous occasion?  To make matters worse, I come home to a beautiful arrangement of roses-my favorite, signs hanging all over the walls that say how much he loves me and two tickets to the symphony.  How lucky am I?  I will make it up to him.  I have to.
Along with my anniversary, it just happens to be Mother's Day tomorrow.  The best thing about it, the hubby let me pick anything that I wanted.  He just wanted to make me happy.  You know what makes me happy?  Yardwork.  Yup, as crazy as it sounds, I am a total addict to working in the yard.  I love planting flowers and trees and just pulling everything together.  It was absolutely fitting and symbolic of what we were able to do today.  You see, I have this tree that died this year.  It was a brand new tree that I planted in the fall of last year.  It was just a small tree and for some reason it didn't make it.  I didn't do anything differently than I did with my other trees, but this tree just didn't survive.

We were able to buy a new tree and some shrubs and transformed part of my garden.  It made me feel amazing to see the new life that replaced the dead tree.  I know this is incredibly cheesy, but I can't help but compare it to myself right now.  A part of me died, my babies died (yes we will get to the babies explanation in a minute), but I will carry on.  I need to look at this as not a part of me dying, but a part of me growing and hopefully turning into something better than I once was.

Ok, now let's talk about the miscarriage.  I started to lose the pregnancy yesterday morning.  I was at a very important meeting at work and I just knew that I was going to start to miscarry.  I started getting very crampy and I was very anxious to get out of the meeting for obvious reasons.  Everyone tried to keep me after the meeting to have side conversations and I was just screaming in my head and trying to hold back the tears.  Finally, I was blunt and told them that I had another meeting to be at and I was very sorry but I had to leave.  I drove as quickly as I could to my doctor's office and ran to the rest room as soon as I got there.  What I knew to be true was confirmed.  It was a very hard day.  I will never forget the feelings I had.  One thing that I am grateful for is that I was able to confirm in my mind what was bothering me.  Were there two babies or just one that didn't survive?  This is should a convoluted question anyway.  I mean technically there were two embryos that we transferred so there were potentially two that attached.  I don't know why it was so important to me, but I just wanted to know if both of them implanted and if I lost both of them.  I will try not to get graphic but I feel confident that both embryos attached and that I lost both of them yesterday.  The bleeding has lightened up today and I feel like the worst has passed.  I just pray that every day will get easier.  I think we are off to a good start. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

It's Done

Today marked the day that I knew it was over.  I lost the pregnancy and now I am just trying to heal.  It is hard to think about because I was only five weeks pregnant.  Everyone keeps calling it a "chemical pregnancy".  Like that is supposed to make me feel any better?  So a "chemical pregnancy" isn't a real pregnancy?  I've been pregnant before, so I'm not crazy.  I was pregnant.  I felt it.  There were a couple of quotes that I came across today that seemed to help just a little:

"Just when you've had enough, life gives you more.  And just when you think it's rained enough, it starts to pour"  This was very fitting today as it poured all day long outside.

"For those who understand no explanation is needed.  For those who do not understand, no explanation is even possible."

"If you could read my mind, you'd be in tears."

"I loved you like there was no tomorrow..and then one day, there wasn't"

"I may have only carried you for a short moment, but you will always live in my heart."

I do believe that these angels were real.  I do believe that there was life, even though their hearts never took their first beats or they never took their first breaths, or that I even got to see them on an Ultrasound screen.  I believe that for whatever reason, they were not ready for this life and I hope that someday I will be able to meet them.

I don't know how I am going to get through this.  I hope that some day I will be venturing outside from my drapes drawn room.  I haven't hardly crawled out of bed in the last few days.  I hope that I can be the mother to my daughter that she desperately needs.  I don't want her to feel abandoned.  I hope to be the wife to my husband that he deserves.  Part of me just feels like I need time and I will get through this, but how long can I reasonably feel sorry for myself with those around me just waiting for me to come to life?  It doesn't seem fair to them.  But this whole thing does not feel fair to me!  I guess it is not about what is fair or unfair, it is about me cherishing what I do have in my life.  Yes, I have been through a tremendous loss.  I have been through hell and back over the past two years.  I can either continue down this path of sadness and grief or I can pick myself up and live my life.  I feel like I am missing it because I am so engulfed in this hardship.  I will try to take it one day at a time and see how things go.  Hopefully brighter days are on the horizon.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Bad News and More Bad News

It just seems to be the story of my life, a constant roller coaster.  Just when I get the news that I have been waiting for 2 years, it is taken away in an instant.  I had my 2nd beta draw yesterday and I was shocked to hear that it was 34.8.  I guess it was originally 34.4.  The numbers suggested that I have an abnormal pregnancy.

There is nothing I can do about it.  Nothing will change it.  Now I just have to wait.

At this point I don't know if I will miscarry or if I have an ectopic pregnancy.  I have to have another blood draw on Friday to see which scenario I am going to fall under.  I had to stop taking my medication last night and that was really hard.  I still seem to think that this may turn around and things will be fine.  I know deep down that is not true, but I can't help but be delusional.  Until I start bleeding and see that the baby is gone, I won't truly believe it.

I am so angry right now.  Angry that I let myself be hopeful, again.  Angry that I told so many people, again.  Angry that I got excited only to be crushed days later.  Why did I even take that pregnancy test?  Why did I even assume that things were going to finally work out for me?  I just wish that I could change so much about this, but one thing I won't change is that feeling I had when I saw that positive for the first time.  I was in disbelief, but I knew I wasn't hallucinating.  I just started sobbing.  I couldn't believe it!  I was FINALLY pregnant.  I was finally blessed.  That is what makes this so hard.  Why even go through that?  Why have that experience to have it ripped right out of my soul a week later.  For a week I was happy, I was sick and my boobs hurt.  I was pregnant.  I felt it.  I knew it to be true.  So WHY?!?!?!  I will never understand and I will never get over this.  The most horrible part is that nothing is happening.  I haven't started bleeding so I don't feel like it is over yet.  I just want it to be over.  I just want to start again, or do I?  I don't know at this point.  I am scared because I know we only have 2 chances left.  What  then if it doesn't work?

Saturday, May 3, 2014

I didn't think I would ever get to write this post...

I have been contemplating whether or not I write this post or not.  I have been trying to keep myself more on the positive side of things and sometimes writing about my struggles brings me down.  I really think I need to type out my feelings though, hopefully it will be therapeutic.  You all will just have to bear with me through it!  Let's start from the beginning!

March 12, 2014
We received the confirmation from my clinic that we could do our Frozen Embryo Transfer in April.  We were so ecstatic.  We started the birth control and waited out the very long process of preparing for the transfer expected to be performed April 22.

April 4, 2014
I started my period and hopefully it will be the last one for a while!

Weeks up to the transfer
I started taking my estradiol 3 mg twice a day and went in for my Ultrasound checks.  Everything looked great!  My lining was looking awesome and we had no reason to reschedule the transfer.  I started the progesterone (Crinone) and it was go time on the 22nd!

April 22, 2014
We went in at 10:00 for our transfer.  I was pretty anxious so the doctor gave me a valium to calm my nerves.  I felt amazing after that.  I couldn't have cared less what happened that day!  Haha.  They thawed two of our frozen embryos and both survived!  One embryo was collapsed and they performed the assisted hatching.  The other embryo looked great and they didn't need to do the assisted hatching on it.  We were able to see them suck the embryos up in the catheter and watched the physician put them in me on the Ultrasound.  It was a pretty cool experience.  I expected it to be painful, but it was perfect.  Everything went according to plan.  I went home and slept for the rest of the day.  The physician didn't say that it was necessary, but I opted to stay on bedrest for the first few days.  I just wanted to make sure I did everything that I could to make those babies stick!

The first few days I experienced a lot of cramping but nothing else.  The cramping made me nervous, but I was just hoping that it meant everything was working in there.  After a few days the cramping was less frequent and I started to relax a little.

April 26, 2014
I started having extreme back pain on the 26th.  I didn't think much of it since I have had two back surgeries, but it alarmed me.  I was hopeful that it meant something was going on inside me.  Either that or it could have been from the constant sitting/laying down for the previous days.

April 28, 2014
I started feeling really nauseated on the 28th.  I thought the nausea was from taking my medication without having breakfast and didn't think too much of it.  The only problem was that it lasted all day and didn't go away even after I had eaten.

April 29th, 2014
Easily one of the best days of my life.  I was still really nauseated on the 29th.  My nerves were getting the best of me and I just had to know if the transfer worked.  I couldn't wait another second to find out if I was pregnant or not.  I did a little bit of internet research and found that many people were able to get a positive test result as soon as 5 days after their transfer.  I was on day 7 so I ended up buying a hpt in the middle of the day and going home and testing.  To my astonishment it was POSITIVE!!!!  I started sobbing and hyperventilating.  I can't believe it worked!!!  I have been waiting for that stick to turn positive for 2 years!  I was so overcome with a peaceful feeling.  I just felt the spirit so much at that moment.  I can't explain it, but I just felt like I was given a hug and told, "I haven't forgotten you."  It was probably one of the most spiritual experiences I have ever had.  I have felt abandoned and forgotten for so long.  It was such a peaceful feeling to know that was not the case at all.  I immediately called my husband and told him the good news.  He was thrilled as well and we both felt like it was a dream.

The rest of the week
Of course I was on cloud nine all week.  I don't think I could have been any happier.  I was still nauseous, which was great.  I started hurting more in my joints and my boobs exploded over night.  They are HUGE.  Probably the best side effect of pregnancy :)  I started getting really fatigued but I was finding it really hard to sleep at night.  It has been a hard week.  I don't know if I have just been too excited to sleep or what, but it has been pretty frustrating not to be able to get any sleep when I am so tired.

May 3, 2014
This brings us to today.  It is amazing how so much joy and happiness can be swept away in an instant.  I went in for my official pregnancy test this morning.  I wasn't worried, but I just wanted to know what my levels were.  I felt that they would be pretty high since I found out so early and my symptoms have been so strong.  I received the call from the nurse and my heart just dropped.  She called me and said that my hcg level was 35.  Not "congratulations you are pregnant", just that "your levels are only 35".  ONLY 35?  What does that mean?  "Well we like to see them at least 100 by now".  By now?  Is something wrong?  "Well when the numbers are low, we often see ectopic pregnancies or miscarriages.  You should be cautiously optimistic".  My heart is sinking.  I immediately fall apart.  All of my happiness was taken away at that very moment.  So now what do I do?  Just pray that things progress or prepare myself for the inevitable?  I guess I have to do both.  At least I had a few days of bliss.  I will never forget that feeling.  I just hope that things work out.  If anyone out there is reading this, please pray for me, hope for me, whatever you can do.  I want to think I am strong enough to handle yet another roadblock with this journey, but I honestly don't think I am.  I will find out on Tuesday the 6th if things are looking positive or not.  They want my levels to double by then.  I don't understand why the levels are so low in the first place.  Are all of these symptoms in my head?  I felt pregnant.  I guess technically I still am, but for how long?  I just want to have my miracle.  I want to get through this.  Tuesday can't come soon enough.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Storm has Passed

Whew.  I am finally starting to feel back to normal!  It feels great to be getting back to normal life.  I am trying really hard to be positive and focus on getting myself healthy.  I was pretty devastated after things didn't work out, but I need to focus on the facts.  We still have five wonderful little embryos that survived.  There is still a chance and not all hope is lost.  I know that the timing is not exactly what I planned, but I was so sick after the retrieval and I was in so much pain.  In a way, it is really a good thing that things were delayed.  My body will have a chance to heal and hopefully the transfer will have a higher chance of success.  I am still hurting here and there.  I haven't done anything the past two days because I am still cramping pretty bad.  I feel like I have a bladder infection even though I don't.  Things must still be pretty cramped inside.  The good thing about staying in for two days is that I am almost caught up with the Olympics.  It's a good thing there is a lot going on to keep me occupied.  Distractions are just what I need right now.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

I am done

I went to the doctor today for my final check.  Diagnosed.  Diagnosed with Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome.  They won't be able to do the transfer.  We only have 4 embryos left.  Only one is good.  We will freeze them until we will be able to use them later.  We won't be able to try again for at least 2 months.  I am heartbroken.  Embryos only have a 70 % chance of survival after being frozen.  That means we are running out of chances.  I am devastated.

I'm emotionally ruined, but I am physically weak and suffering.  I am so nauseated and dizzy from the OHS. I have thrown up twice today from the nausea.  My stomach is still very tender, but the swelling is starting to decrease.  I don't know how I am going to move on from this.  I don't know how to live my life after going through this.  I don't know how to pick up the pieces and cling to hope that everything will work out.  I don't know how to be a good mother to my child because all I can think about is what i have been through and what I have lost.  I don't know how to be a good wife and look my husband in the eye and smile again.  I don't know when or if happiness will ever return to my soul.  I just want to run away and be alone.  I don't want to bring others down with me.  I don't want to talk about it.  I don't want to face anyone's questions.  But at the same time, why isn't anyone checking on me to see if I am ok?  I don't want them to come, but I feel even more alone without anyone calling.

I hope this pain is temporary.  This pain surpasses anything I have ever felt.  I knew I would be disappointed, but I never dreamed I could feel this much pain.  All I wanted was to be a mother to another child.  I don't understand why that is being withheld from me.  I know that we still have another chance to finish the IVF process, but I don't know if I want to.  I don't know if I can bear going through this pain again.  I don't know if I even want to try.  I am weak.  I am broken.  I give up.